• Ideas
  • Jun 07, 2019

58th Venice Biennale Part 6: Exhibitions Around Venice

Installation view of SAHAND HESAMIYAN’s Forough, 2016, stainless steel, gold leaf, electrostatic coating, each of two parts: 290 × 248 × 248 cm, at the Conservatorio di Musica Benedetto Marcello, Venice, 2019. All photos by HG Masters for ArtAsiaPacific unless otherwise stated.

The Venice Biennale attracts more than 600,000 cultural tourists to the sinking island city, directing them not only to the eastern Arsenale and Giardini compounds but to sites beyond the tour-choked locales around the Rialto Bridge and Piazza San Marco. This makes the Biennale a major occasion not only for national artistic visibility but for independent exhibitions looking to reach new audiences. The city’s existing cultural institutions all host exhibitions. This year’s notable ones were the Jannis Kounellis survey at Fondazione Prada; Luc Tuyman’s monographic show at Palazzo Grassi; and the anthology of Alberto Burri’s works at the Fondazione Giorgio Cini. This being mercantile Venice, many of the temporary exhibitions are backed by commercial galleries looking to acquire prestige and collectors for their artists through the loose affiliation or simple concurrence with the Biennale. That said, most of the exhibitions are at least decent and often very good, and offer the chance to see the interiors of the city’s grand palazzos. Here’s a look at six exhibitions from around Venice featuring artists from Asia.